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progress has value only if it's shared by everyone.
but, it is shared by every everyone, every chinese in the world that is, and that include me, everyone like me, and every chinese inside the prc because: it's known as chinese pride and every chinese (if they deem themselves as chinese that is) have plenty of pride in them?
You mention hisgh tech realizations: metro, modern buildings, I totally agree with you: chinese metro are super, metro in cities like london or paris are 100 years old, and difficult to compare.
I mentioned high tech (as in high speed transit) only because chinese mass transit is the envy of the president of the uninted states, barrack obama, who made it a solom promise that he will make it his effort to catch up to china when china in the respect if elected. in all trueness, it should have been china who should try to up to america.
but as far as I know, peoples dont live in metro or modern buildings.
i'm sorry if i had mislead you on this one. but, when i said metro, my intention was to say metropolist or centers of population. i'm a lazy one as you well know from my small caps but but i definitely wasn't referring to the subway when I said metro. my mistake.
And for most beijing peoples, its hours and hours or transportation every day to go to work,or in traffic jam, years and years of saving money to buy an appartment with poor architecture but maximum price.
Are you suggesting that beijing should simply drop the horseless carriage and go back to the horseless one or even to the days of the richshaw or even bicycle power? there's a price to pay for everything and modern urbanizations goes hand in hand with smog, traffic jams, and hours of commutes to and from work or from one place to another. it happen across the united states coast to coast from nyc, san francisco.
You talk about "face". Any big city in this world need to have a face, but when you look behind, what do you see? For me, a city is far more than an olympic village, shopping mall, business , administration building and opera. far far more, but I always regret to see this "more" forgotten by these famous architects or urbanists.
chinese cities not only have a face all its own, it even have characteristics all it own but one thing chinese cities have in common -- it's east meets west or, the veryu modern meets the very prehistoric so sorry, but your words just don't wash here.